How to Efficiently Donate Used Items from Your Homeowners Association

Aug 12, 2016 11:42:05 AM / by HOA Manager

Mother and daughter with donation boxesIt’s time for some seasonal cleaning in your homeowners association. Out with the old and in with the new – but what do you do with the “old” when it’s not quite ready for the landfill? Donating used items is a great option as long as you do a little homework to find out which local organizations and donation centers are most appropriate for the items you’d like to give away. Use the following tips as a guideline for determining what goes where and how to get it there.

Talk to your Association neighbors

Try to collect donation items collectively with your neighbors. This might help motivate you if you create a deadline for items to be collected and a destination for drop off.

Many items are eligible for donation

You might be surprised to learn exactly what items you can donate. In addition to clothing and furniture, cars, cell phones and other electronics, fitness equipment, home appliances, even art supplies and old towels, are widely accepted by specialized organizations. If you’re looking to donate a unique item, or several of the same items in bulk, do some further research about local organizations and donation centers in need of specific things.

Consider what shape your items are in to determine where to donate

If you’re planning to donate a broken refrigerator, make sure the organization is aware the item is in need of repair. Some donation centers accept broken items for parts; however, most organizations and donation centers prefer to accept gently used items in working condition. Be sure to communicate the item’s condition prior to arranging a donation.

After choosing where to donate, decide how you’ll get the items to the organization

Oftentimes large organizations and donation centers are able to arrange a day and time to pick up your unwanted items directly from your home or business. Smaller organizations in need might instead have certain days and times available for you to arrange a drop off at a specified location.

Make sure to get a donation receipt for tax purposes

Before donating, make a detailed list of the items you’ll be giving away along with the estimated values. Keep in mind that, since the items are used, price points might be lower than expected. When your items are picked up or dropped off, request a receipt from the organization or donation center to keep track of what to count as a tax deduction. Speaking with a tax professional for advice is also a good idea.

Sometimes working with your homeowners association friends and neighbors can help motivate a good seasonal cleaning. Remember, one homeowner’s garbage, just might be another homeowners treasure. You may end up swapping treasures with your Association neighbors in the process!

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Topics: Living in an HOA, Resident Tips